This has turned out to be quite a challenging research topic. There
are bits and pieces of information scattered about regarding the
number of LNG tanker trucks and shipments, but it takes a bit of doing
to piece together even a rough national picture.
Let's start with the biggest source of LNG trucks -- Yankee Gas'
Everett Terminal in Massachusetts:
News About Yankee Gas' Liquified Natural Gas Plant
...Everett Terminal sends out 10,000 trucks of LNG each year to
companies in New England, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, making it one
of the largest LNG trucking operations in the world.
Everett Terminal appears to be the largest source of LNG tanker trucks
in the US. Although there are a number of other LNG terminals that
operate on the same scale as Everett, they generally rely on pipeline
shipments, and do not appear to be as actively involved in trucking:
U.S. LNG Markets and Uses: June 2004 Update
Energy Information Administration
...The Everett facility is the only U.S. marine terminal in which some
LNG is trucked from the facility to customers. Everett supplies are
distributed by truck throughout New England and as far south as
Pennsylvania and Delaware...
However, the same report also notes that terminals may send LNG trucks
intra-company to intermediate storage facilities:
...For those facilities without liquefaction, additions of LNG to
storage require truckload deliveries. As a result, additions generally
occur on a less consistent basis than for facilities that are
liquefying a portion of their requirement on a more or less daily
basis. Because trucks carry up to 10,000 gallons of LNG each trip,
some of the smallest satellite facilities require only one truckload
to fill the tanks. However, at the largest satellite facilities,
annual truckload deliveries number up to 2,000.
So, deliveries to large satellite facilities can involve about 2,000
truckloads per year. There is information available on the number of
such facilities in operation, but it's difficult to get a handle on
how many would be considered 'large' facilities:
...Alternatively, the LNG may be transported in special tanker trucks
to small facilities where it is stored and regasified as needed. Such
facilities are called ?satellite plants.? The United States has about
100 LNG satellite and peakshaving plants throughout the country.
Assuming that, of the 100 LNG satellite facilities, 5 are in the
"largest" category, receiving 2,000 truckloads per year, then these
five alone would account for another 10,000 tanker truck shipments of
The remaining, smaller facilities, might account for a similar
amount...another 10,000 shipments.
All told, then, I estimate about at least 30,000 LNG truck shipments
per year -- 10,000 from the Everett facility + 10,000 to the largest
satellite facilities + another 10,000 to the smaller satellites.
I came across one other quantitative mention of LNG trucking in California:
THE CURRENT ROLES OF NATURAL GAS AND LNG IN CALIFORNIA
...Each truckload of LNG totals between 10,000 to 12,000 gallons...The
largest single source of LNG used in California is a plant owned by an
affiliate of El Paso Natural Gas Company. This plant, located near
Topock, Arizona, supplies California with approximately 29,000 gallons
per day of LNG.
Since each truck carries about 10,000 gallons, there are about three
trucks per day from El Paso Natural Gas into California, or
approximately 1,000 per year.
These data focus on the number of LNG shipments, since that is the
type of data most commonly available.
The links provided in above by my fellow researcher, bobbie7-ga, can
provide some additional perspective to estimate the number of trucks.
The 1977 report estimated that there were 75 LNG tanker trucks in
operation in the US. By 1998, that estimate had nearly doubled to 120
tanker trucks making 10,000-15,000 shipments annually.
Since we have estimated that the current level of shipments has about
doubled, it seems reasonable to suppose the overall size of the truck
fleet has also doubled to approximately 240 LNG tanker trucks in use
These numbers are necessarily approximate, since there does not seem
to be a full, national accounting of the truck fleet or of total
shipments or truck-miles.
I trust these data meet your needs, just the same.
If there's anything else I can do for you on this, let me know by
posting a request for clarification.
All the best,
search strategy -- Google searches on various combinations of:
trucks OR trucking